Lebanon’s prime minister designate Mustapha Adib has abandoned efforts to form a new government amid popular demands for reform.
Mr Adib gave no details but reports say difficulties centred on Shia parties seeking to control the finance ministry and pick ministers in the cabinet.
Lebanon – long split along sectarian lines – is in an acute economic crisis.
It is reeling from last month’s huge explosion in Beirut which killed at least 190 people and injured 6,000.
The previous Lebanese government resigned amid widespread anger over the blast, which devastated swathes of the capital.
The cause of the disaster was the detonation of 2,750 tonnes of ammonium nitrate that had been stored unsafely in a warehouse at the city’s port for six years.
The World Bank has estimated that the explosion caused as much as $4.6bn (£3.4bn) in damage to buildings and infrastructure.
French President Emmanuel Macron has been urging Lebanon’s political factions to quickly form a new government.
Mr Macron has offered to host an aid conference in mid-October to help.
Why did Mr Adib quit?
Mustapha Adib, Lebanon’s former ambassador to Germany, was nominated to the post on 31 August.
He set out saying he wanted an immediate start to reforms and an International Monetary Fund rescue package.
But the Sunni Muslim politician appears to have hit a stumbling block with the main Shia Muslim blocs in Lebanon’s parliament.